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From Brett LoGiurato at the Star-Ledger:  Liberty work to build fan base at Prudential Center to Madison Square Garden levels

Getting settled, and attracting the crowd numbers they were used to playing in front of at the Garden, have been challenges in the first month of the Liberty’s season.

The Liberty have struggled to recoup much of the fan base that consistently made Madison Square Garden one of the highest-attended WNBA arenas, with paid attendance averages of 11,926 fans per game in their first 14 years there. The Liberty, who continue a four-game homestand when they host Connecticut tonight at 7 p.m., have averaged 8,255 fans this season at the Prudential Center.

A skeptical WHB note: I’ll wait for Queenie’s report before I believe that average.

From Odeen Domingo at the Arizona Republic: New WNBA President Laurel Richie hopes to take league to new heights

Q: What is being emphasized more in growing the fan base? Is it converting the skeptics or starting from the ground up with young kids?

A: I think it is a great experience for fans to grow up and experience the league and be a WNBA fan from the age of 7 and be one until 80. But I think there are still adult audiences that are untapped. And some of them fall into the category of “unaware, unengaged” and some of them fall into the “skeptics that need to be converted.” I use myself as an example. I spent 30 years going to Cleveland Cavaliers games. So I consider myself a basketball fan. In New York, the Liberty team exists there. I support a lot of women’s causes. I have gone at least once to every single sporting event in New York City that you can go to. But I never went to a Liberty game. So I spend a lot of time thinking about – that shouldn’t be and how did that happen and how can it not happen.

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From the Liberty:

As a WNBA All-Access member, receive Up to 50% off per person. Be there to support the Liberty this season in Newark, NJ with this great offer.

Be there when the Liberty take on Candace Parker and the LA Sparks on Sunday, June 26th 4 pm at the Prudential Center. Use code: TMN241 to save!

It’s through Ticketmaster, so the 50% will probably cover their fees.

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this email — I have no idea why you didn’t (I didn’t), but here it is:

Dear (season subscriber that has already re-upped),

Please accept this letter as an official invitation for you and a guest to join me in a suite at the Prudential Center on Wednesday, November 3rd at 7:00pm as the NJ Nets take on the Charlotte Bobcats. I would like to take this opportunity to get to know some of our fans, and you are one of them. Please note, however, that strings are attached! It will be my goal to get you so excited about this team that you will choose to become part of our 2011 Liberty Season Subscriber family by the end of the evening.

I am so happy that my family and I are now part of the “Liberty Family.” Our team plays the game with great passion and enthusiasm, and as the former coach of the Sacramento Monarchs, I’ve always loved the atmosphere of a Liberty crowd. As we move to “The Rock” in Newark, our team is excited to keep all of the old Garden traditions while creating new ones with you in a brand new environment.

Under the leadership of Rutgers alumnus Cappie Pondexter, I can promise you that some of the new “traditions” will be an attacking offense, hard-nosed defense and a lot of turnovers by the opposing team!

So, please be my guest on Wednesday the 3rd at the Prudential Center to learn more about each other, the new state-of-the-art building, and how you can become a part of the 2011 season. Space is limited, so please RSVP today to Jaime Sparling (Jaime.Sparling@thegarden.com or 212-465-3901).

Thanks for your support and see you at The Rock!

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Or just some weird-azz basketball doppelgänger thang: From the NYTimes: Nets Show the Way From M.S.G. to Newark

To reflect the easiness of attending a Nets game at the Prudential Center through New Jersey Transit, Williams, a second-year player, took the short journey from Penn Station on a train ride that will be shown on the team’s coverage on the YES Network.

The Nets relocated to the Prudential Center this season for a two-year pit stop on their way to Brooklyn. One of the benefits is that access to the arena is available through public transit, an option that was not available at the Izod Center.

The Nets are hopeful that that change — along with roster changes and the debut of Coach Avery Johnson — will result in an uptick in attendance from last season’s league low average of 13,301.

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